R. Kelly Bootleg Album ‘I Admit It’ Released And Quickly Removed

Spotify and Apple Music removed a bootleg R. Kelly album called “I Admit It” within hours of its surprise release on Friday—five months after the disgraced R&B singer was sentenced to three decades in prison in July on trafficking and racketeering charges.

Kelly, whose real name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, was sentenced in July to 30 years in prison after he was convicted of eight counts of trafficking women across state lines and one count of racketeering. Specifically, he was found guilty of violating the federal Mann Act, an anti-trafficking law that criminalizes the taking of people across state lines for the purpose of “prostitution or debauchery.” Allegations against the beleaguered singer have been swirling for the majority of Kelly’s career, beginning in the 1990s, when he married late singer Aaliyah, who was 15 at the time. In 1996, his ex-wife Tiffany Hawkins accused him of having sex with her five years earlier when he was 24 and she was 15—Kelly settled the suit for $250,000. He was charged with 21 counts of child pornography in 2002, but was acquitted of all charges six years later. He was charged in 2019 with 18 counts including distributing child pornography and kidnapping women—to which he pleaded not guilty.

R. Kelly’s popularity had surged in the weeks following his guilty verdict last September on sex trafficking and racketeering charges, with both radio plays increasing by 55% and streams increasing by 14%, according to data provided to Billboard. Album sales also soared 517% while video streams jumped 23% in a one-week stretch after he pleaded guilty, Rolling Stone reported.

While Kelly’s songs have seen increases in streams, streaming services including Apple Music and Spotify have “muted” his catalog, in accordance with their policies on public hate content—removing Kelly’s music from their promoted playlists, although his music remains on the platforms.

4.37 million. That’s how many monthly listeners Kelly has on Spotify, according to the platform.

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